AC Privacy and Medical Issues Medical Identity Theft

AC Privacy and Medical Issues Medical Identity Theft - June...

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June 13, 2009   www.cnn.com PATIENT MONEY Medical Problems Could Include Identity Theft  By WALECIA KONRAD Brandon Sharp, a 37-year-old manager at an oil and gas company in Houston, has never had any real health problems and, luckily, he has never stepped foot in an emergency room. So imagine his surprise a few years ago when he learned he owed thousands of dollars worth of emergency- service medical bills. Mr. Sharp, as it turned out, was a victim of a fast-growing crime known as medical identity theft . At the time, Mr. Sharp was about to get married and buy his first home. Before applying for a mortgage he requested a copy of his credit report. That is when he found he had several collection notices under his name for emergency room visits throughout the country. “There was even a $19,000 bill for a Life Flight air ambulance service in some remote location I’d never heard of,” said Mr. Sharp, who made this unhappy discovery in 2003. “I had emergency room bills from places like Bowling Green, Kan., where I’ve never even visited. I’m still cleaning up the mess.” The last time federal data on the crime was collected, for a 2007 report, more than 250,000 Americans a year were victims of medical identity theft. That number has almost certainly increased since then, because of the increased use of electronic medical records systems built without extensive safeguards, said Pam Dixon, executive director of the nonprofit World Privacy Forum and author of a report on medical identity theft. And uncountable, Ms. Dixon said, are the people who do not yet know they are victims. They
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This note was uploaded on 03/21/2012 for the course COMM 1000345 taught by Professor Mccloud during the Fall '10 term at Mohawk College.

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AC Privacy and Medical Issues Medical Identity Theft - June...

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